Chelsea fan group condemns homophobic 'rent boys' chants at City Ground

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The Chelsea Pride fan group condemned homophobic chants that were heard during the first half of the Blues' Premier League game against Nottingham Forest at the City Ground.

Moments after Chelsea took the lead in Sunday's contest, a chant of "Chelsea rent boys" was audible in the ground and on Sky Sports' television coverage.

The chant was defined in January 2022 as a hate crime by the Crown Prosecution Service, with Chelsea welcoming that decision at the time.

It has not been eradicated, though, and remains a slur occasionally aimed at Chelsea players and supporters.

Chelsea Pride, which describes itself as the club's official LGBTQ+ and Friends Supporters Group, said such a chant was unacceptable.

The group said in a statement: "We totally condemn the Chelsea Rent Boy chant that can be heard at the city ground. Time to call this out the game is live on @SkySportsPL This is now classed as a hate crime."

The Pride In Football organisation backed that reaction by stating: "We are very disappointed to hear that *one day* into 2023 and there is homophobia being heard at a football game.

"If you hear someone around you being homophobic, call them out. We need to kick homophobia out of football. This is not okay!"

Forest fan group LGBTQ Trickies hit out at those responsible and called for police action.

They said in a response to Chelsea Pride: "From all genuine #NFFC fans, please accept our apologies, not only do we hope @NottPolFootball will do their best to take action, we would hope @NFFC release a statement condoning this and take necessary action.

"We are embarrassed and ashamed."

Forest reacted after the game, promising it would look into behaviour from the club's fans.

A statement from Forest read: "The club are aware of reports concerning chants aimed at Chelsea supporters from a minority of fans this evening and do not condone any type of discriminatory or offensive behaviour. The matter will be fully investigated."